Placing Faith In Thunderbolt GPU..

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by VeganHipster, Sep 8, 2011.

  1. VeganHipster, Sep 8, 2011
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2011

    VeganHipster macrumors regular

    Jun 18, 2011
    I really want to get the server and I can not understand why they could not fit the 6630m. I really need a new mac and I want a quad-core since I am way behind the times as it is. I want the server, but the problem with GPU is annoying, and I want the dedicated GPU, but I don't want a dual-core!

    Should I just buy the server and wait for the thunderbolt adapter to be released? I don't want to place my faith in waiting for this if it won't ever come out. Has there been any news lately? Thanks!
  2. goMac macrumors 603

    Apr 15, 2004
    It's probably a heat output problem. Quad core + dedicated graphics = too much heat.

    I mean, a quad core chip would put out twice the heat of a dual core.

    Do you need the quad core? In quite a few cases, the dual core will be faster due to the increased clock rate.
  3. VeganHipster thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 18, 2011
    Heat is probably the reason. Too bad they could not work something out :/

    I don't need the quad-core, but I certainly would rather get the quad-core, wait it out for 2 months, and then get a decent GPU. That would be the main appeal, that I could get the new GPU and still have a really great CPU.

    Then again, I am not even sure if my uses that would need a GPU would even warrant one. I only play Starcraft II and KoTOR, if a game is available for my 360 or PS3 I just buy it for that. I will play The Old Republic when it comes out.

    What would be the main differences between the quad and the dual-core i7? I know obviously the quad will be faster in most cases, but what else? Thanks
  4. philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
    the dual core is hotter. the dual core pulls more juice when pushed. the dual core i7 gpu chip can pull 11 watts when gaming or working hard. all of the above was tested with a kill-a-watt meter by me.

    I don't game so i did handbrake played a dvd standard and watched tv on eyetv while typing the results into macrumors the dual core was pulling 61-65 watts the quad server was pulling 55 watts. i did have only the eyetv and a keyboard plugged in. add a usb dac add a fw800 and you would be over watts the power supply puts out 85 watts max.

    Apple needs to make the 2012 server with a better gpu but the power supply would need to be a brick the old brick pulled 110 watts. this would allow a quad and a gpu in the server. they will never offer this as an option. no they would rather you use an external pci e case and an external gpu inside of it. just greed on their part or good business. the t-bolt cable 50 bucks the pcie case 200 plus an external gpu 100 plus at least 350.

    a brick 50 to 80 bucks. I have ranted on this an most people on this site diagree with me they never want a brick... one person said apple will sell a monitor with a gpu inside of it. greed or good business your call.
  5. KScottMyers macrumors regular

    Jul 17, 2009
    Orlando, FL
    I would bet Apple's decision was to not offer the dedicated GPU in the quad core model to not cannibalize the iMac. Many would choose the quad core mini with the dedicated GPU over a entry level iMac. By calling it a server, Apple can defend the quad core architecture without the need for a higher end GPU.

    Apple is very good about pricing/configuring their product line in a way that pushes you into the higher end models.
  6. Outrigger macrumors 68000


    Dec 22, 2008
    where are you getting the impression that there will be dedicated gpu via TB adapter for the mini? TB storage are getting delays and from the looks of things, external gpu will be just that, a dream. it sounds like you don't even know exactly what you need, just want, but in this case, what you want doesn't exist. Your best bet is to just get a PC.
  7. VeganHipster thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 18, 2011
    1. A Mac is a PC. A PC is a personal computer, and a Mac is exactly that. If you are telling me to get a Windows PC (which I am assuming you are) , well I will not because I hate windows, don't game enough to warrant the building of a gaming rig, and I need software for school exclusive to OS X. Not only that, I have not seen a PC with a quad-core i7 processor that is the same size as the Mac Mini or as quiet. Either way, nothing will compare to it, since no other computers run OS X.

    2. No external thunderbolt GPUs exist? Quite the contrary.
    If you check on the Sonnet Tech website, there is one on there too I believe.
  8. Outrigger macrumors 68000


    Dec 22, 2008
    I think for all intents and purposes, we all know that when one say a PC, it is generally meant as windows machine, or else Apple wouldn't have aired "I'm a Mac, I'm a PC" ad campaign.

    The article in the anandtech is stating that if there is enough interest, they would START development. there is no mention of a timeline, just soon which could mean anything. what they have is a prototype. what difference would it make to a consumer if something doesn't exist vs. something that is in prototype mode only and not even in development, let alone in production? It might come out in a few months, or next year or the year after, but as far as consumers are concerned, it doesn't "exist" right now.

    and from your OP, you want it within this year which why I said, it won't happen.
  9. Darth.Titan macrumors 68030


    Oct 31, 2007
    Austin, TX
    A Thunderbolt-based GPU adapter, if released, is going to be crazy expensive. My guess is that it will cost along the lines of $1000+

    You should probably take that into consideration.
  10. old-wiz macrumors G3

    Mar 26, 2008
    West Suburban Boston Ma
    Even if someone builds a GPU built into a thunderbolt connection, someone would still have to write a driver for OSx. Apple might not be willing to do it. The article says they are beginning development. That can take a year or more, and they would still need to license a thunderbolt connector.
  11. Anonymous Freak macrumors 603

    Anonymous Freak

    Dec 12, 2002
    The price difference between the 2.0 GHz quad-core Mac mini server with integrated graphics and the 2.5 GHz quad-core iMac with discrete graphics is $200. Significantly less than the cost an external GPU would be. (There are already existing ExpressCard-to-PCIe-chassis devices, and WITHOUT the video card they cost over $200.

    Plus you get a 21" 1080P display thrown in.
  12. blunti macrumors 6502a

    Mar 15, 2011
    exactly what i was about to say.

    The dual-core in some cases will outperform the quad due to higher clock speed. The BTO i7 with discrete gpu is actually a decent rig for your gaming needs.
  13. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    Odd that you'd care about the GPU in a server. Most people don't even connect a monitor to a server or maybe they connect some tiny display that is powered off most of the time.
  14. Mr.C macrumors 601

    Apr 3, 2011
    London, UK.
    I think you're probably missing his point. He doesn't want the server because of the server software but because it has a quad core CPU. You can just disable or delete the server apps AMD use it as a regular OS anyway.
  15. DesertSilver macrumors 6502

    Aug 18, 2011
    Portland, OR
    Although it sounds like you wouldn't game on the Mac all that much, my opinion is go with the iMac if you're at all concerned with gaming performance. It has better CPU and GPU's available out of the box.

    I had the 2011 i5/AMD and I would say that it could "get by" for playing some games. For Portal 2 to run at 1080p, I had to drop all graphics settings to medium or lower to get decent framerates. And by decent, I mean choppy but playable. At 720p, it was playable with mostly maxed out graphic settings, for what it's worth. Portal 2 was the only game I tried on it.

    I ended up getting the Mini Server due to the better CPU and my lack of concern for gaming. I don't even want to try Portal on the Server. :)

    Hope I was able to help in some way.
  16. jdguggs10, Sep 9, 2011
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2011

    jdguggs10 macrumors member


    Aug 7, 2011
    wow, a side dish of advice with a main course of attitude
  17. The-Pro macrumors 65816

    Dec 2, 2010
    I was just about to right pretty much the same thing.
    Apple is probably THE best when it comes to product marketing. It would be stupid for them to sell the mini with quad and Dedicated GPU because they would make less money as people a fair amount of people would by it over a more expensive iMac. By not offering this, customers are "forced" into getting the iMac.
    A server is meant to handle high workloads without slowdowns, a GPU is hardly ever really required. Example: The Xserve was available with the same specs as the Mac Pro, 8 cores etc, but was able to have more RAM (48GB in Xserve, 32GB in Mac Pro of that time). The GPU however was a 256MB GT 120. Why such a crappy GPU?, because servers don't need them!!!! Most people don't have a screen connected to their servers.

    Most people don't need the quad i7 power of the mini server, thats why apple chose to keep all starting prices under 1000 by offering a range of configurations which are good enough for the consumers without drawing buyers away from the more expensive iMac, Mac Pro etc.

    Apple does pretty much the same thing with the iMac, they don't offer the i7 in the base 21.5" because that way people who want the power have to opt for the more expensive model even if they don't want the better GPU and larger HDD. Thus they make more profit.
  18. jsolares macrumors 6502a

    Aug 8, 2011
    Land of eternal Spring
    There's a big difference in stating external GPU is a dream that'll never come true, and something that's being developed and will be available in the future.

    It's not the only device announced that could run a GPU, there's also the magma one, it sounds like it should be out within this year, doesn't seem like a prototype.

    I would wait until i know the price of either box to buy a mini with the intent of using one of them tho

Share This Page